An immersive and watery performance of Ballard’s dystopian novel at this year’s Essex Book Festival.
Immersive theatre is all the rage these days, what with the awfulness of Secret Cinema and the like, but the Essex Book Festival is preparing to take things to a new and challenging level this year, with a performance of J.G. Ballard‘s The Drowned World taking place in a swimming pool.
Watery music pioneers Wet Sounds will be creating an audio-visual spectacle with sounds both above and below the surface of the water, as they perform a version of Ballard’s dystopian story of a future where London has been submerged underwater – very topical, you might think, what with all the Extinction Rebellion apocalypse hysteria.
Taking place at Chelmsford Leisure Centre, the event is – in case you had any doubts – performed with the audience in the water – swimsuits are a must (no nude bathing allowed) and goggles highly recommended. Obviously, those who have a fear of the water might want to give this a miss, though floatation devices will be provided. It all sounds both exciting and vaguely terrifying, and I’m not sure that the word ‘drowned’ is ever going to really work with a water-themed event, but perhaps that’s just me. Anyway, if we can make it to Chelmsford, we’ll let you know how it goes.
Tickets are £15 / £10 concessions, and can be bought here: https://essexbookfestival.org.uk/event/wet-sounds/